Arts & Entertainment
1 min

Macho worlds of gaming and sports

Looking at gay sex in Dragon Age and Brendan Burke's coming out

HUNG LIKE A DRAGON. Grey Warden and Zevran get it on in Dragon Age: Origins.

To paraphrase Miss Croatia: Faggotry is taking a stride in the nation. You know how I know? Because there is a gay sex scene in a role-playing video game out this season called Dragon Age: Origins. If certain suggestive answers are delivered when playing the game, the character Grey Warden will invite warrior-elf Zevran back to his tent for Brokeback Mountain-style sex. After their encounter, Zevran laments that he knows nothing of love, only of lust and death, since his mother was a whore and his father an assassin. As an avid Final Fantasy player, I have to say this is a breakthrough. Sure, the Sims have gay sex, but this is RPG, a land locked in a heteronormative hero narrative since its inception.

Then, recently, Brendan Burke, son of Maple Leafs’ general manager Brian Burke, came out of the closet in hopes of mitigating the incidence of gay slurs in the hockey world. In interviews, Burke speaks glowingly of his teammates’ support and understanding and seems to believe that homophobia in sports is on the decline. Burke explained his choice to come out, suggesting that if people knew there might be someone gay in their midst, they would alter their insults accordingly.

Both of these recent occurrences took place in worlds that I perceive as macho. The gaming world, though eclectic and eccentric, has always seemed to belong to straight men and, usually, is heavily reliant on pushing macho themes like fast-car racing, warfare and unrealistic women. I can picture the marketing teams desperately trying to figure out who their 20 percent of profitable customers are, and I’m guessing the default is straight men aged 18 to 40 or so. And hockey is hockey, what more can you say about it? Like most sports it lives in the macho world as well.

These two incidents are really great kinks in these otherwise macho worlds. Of course, there will always be the naysayers. One article about Dragon Age that appeared in a WorldNetDaily piece by Chelsea Schilling (the antithesis of me at WND) is titled “Players have dirty ‘gay’ sex in hit game: Trendy Christmas gift features characters naked, kissing in homosexual embrace.” Pending further media scrutiny, the game is apparently selling on the Walmart website.